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Loss of drivers has hurt the us economy.

Old 03-06-06, 01:43 PM
  #26  
Dahon.Steve
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Originally Posted by Roody
I live in Lansing, the city that brought you Oldsmobile and Fisher Body. We have lost thousands of jobs due to automaion in the auto plants. The manufacturing job losses in most industries is much more due to automation than to reduced consumption. In some industries, job loss has been caused by plants moving to regions and countries with lower labor classes.
Good one.

Everyone on this forum thinks the loss of automobiles will force other people to find high paying jobs in different fields. This is wishful thinking because Detroit became a slum once the manufacturing left the city and this has been repeated time in again in cities across the nation. I'm certain if Lansing lost its remaining manufacturing base, we will see slums where those autoworkers used to live.
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Old 03-06-06, 02:24 PM
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What in the HECK is everybody talking about**********?

The demand for cars in the US has gone down? When did this happen? That's like saying nobody goes to the Hamptons anymore, because it's too crowded. Nobody is buying cars any more, because there's too much traffic.

GM is laying off workers because it can't compete with foreign automakers. There are many reasons for this, including labor costs, brand and dealership structure, and lousy marketing. And it's only going to get worse for US auto workers as Chinese car companies ramp up production.

But less demand for cars? Where is the evidence of that?

I think we're suffering from delusions of grandeur, here.
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Old 03-06-06, 03:14 PM
  #28  
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Just think of the even more terrible effect on the economy caused by people who have stopped smoking.
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Old 03-06-06, 03:31 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by same time
What in the HECK is everybody talking about**********?

The demand for cars in the US has gone down? When did this happen? That's like saying nobody goes to the Hamptons anymore, because it's too crowded. Nobody is buying cars any more, because there's too much traffic.

GM is laying off workers because it can't compete with foreign automakers. There are many reasons for this, including labor costs, brand and dealership structure, and lousy marketing. And it's only going to get worse for US auto workers as Chinese car companies ramp up production.

But less demand for cars? Where is the evidence of that?

I think we're suffering from delusions of grandeur, here.
I think that it is more speculation. A “what if...” type of thing. Still, the stats are predicting many more cars on us roads in the next 2 decades. But consider this. Many states have structured fuel taxes to go to road maintenance. What if there are more cars using less gas? There will be less money for roads.

I live in Pittsburgh. In 1975 or so they started closing steel mills, because Japan was producing a better product for less money. This wiped out many communities, where the average income was 50K with a HS education. Those areas are still wasted, but the city adapted to high tech and now we have a cleaner city with a fair amount of high paying high teck jobs. Google is opening an office here. In a free market, if no one buys, the company should go down the tubes. Then other industries will grow. Horse and buggy gave way to the car, the car will give way to? Perhaps telecommuting, bicycles, trains, or how about hitch hiking? Then the only ones driving will be the rich.

I know that the oil dependant businesses are scared. Otherwise they would not be engaged in all of the advertising and lobbing efforts. Another short term issue is that people are less willing to buy something if they could get a more efficient car next year. They'll just wait. And that waiting will hurt. I think that an economist could argue that in part offering tax breaks for SUVs contributed to this dilemma. People made a choice based on a more or less random incentive. Then Ford met the demand, and now they find themselves in a position of not being ready with fuel efficient hybrids.

I feel sorry for those workers in the auto industry. I hope that they take advantage of any college matching funds that their employers offer. It will be impossible to get paid 80K a year bending sheet metal once the industry starts closing and layoffs.
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Old 03-06-06, 04:01 PM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Autokat
You seemed to have forgotten people are already starting to adapt , I think it will be slow change but before you know it'll be normal , it won't be sudden if you look at the car manufactures there building more economical cars so just keep watching ..
slow change like converting to the metric system? LOL. j/k

The change has started, but most of the people involved and enganged in it are a) relatively well educated, and thus have a wider array of job opportunties b) more open minded c) in a life position to do so more easily than others.

I'd bet dollar to donuts that if a radical shift happened overnight it would be better on average down the road for all, just better hope your on the right side of the curve. The short term will be painful, but perhaps that is better than a long drawn out process prompted by necessity instead of choice.
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Old 03-06-06, 04:12 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by obliterator
Has anyone thought about how many jobs would be lost if people gave up purchasing new cars?
Well, since I've never bought a new car in over 50 years of living. I guess I caused all the misery at GM by myself.
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Old 03-06-06, 06:11 PM
  #32  
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Obliterator...

I suggest you read the book, 'Suburban Nation: The Rise of Sprawl and the Decline of the American Dream.' In terms of job creation, mass transit is much better for the economy than road construction. I don't remember the exact figures, but for every mile of mass transit built about 30 times for jobs are created than for every mile of freeway construction. As the economy shifts from one area to the other, employment eventually shifts accordingly. Yes, it can be a long, difficult adjustment, but that's pretty much what all of life is: one long difficult adjustment.
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Old 03-06-06, 06:19 PM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve
Good one.

Everyone on this forum thinks the loss of automobiles will force other people to find high paying jobs in different fields. This is wishful thinking because Detroit became a slum once the manufacturing left the city and this has been repeated time in again in cities across the nation. I'm certain if Lansing lost its remaining manufacturing base, we will see slums where those autoworkers used to live
.
I don't agree that Detroit became a slum because manufacturing left the city.

Detroit became a slum because the widespread use of the auto permitted people to move outside the city. Most wanted to move because they were racists who did not want to live near the rapidly expanding population of African-Americans. Then, much later, the jobs followed the whites to the suburbs. The suburbs of Detroit to this day are booming areas.

Detroit proper was killed by cars and racism!
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Old 03-06-06, 06:21 PM
  #34  
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Where I work we build custom equipment for assembly lines, primarily fluid fill and refrigeration. It's not a factory but a "job shop" and all of our employees are skilled or semi-skilled. Currently 58% of our business is the auto industry but we have been transitioning away from that and our goal is 40%.

Of course I don't want to see anything bad happen to GM and Ford (and Delphi, too) but if they did go bankrupt it probably wouldn't affect us that much, if at all. I couldn't say the same ten or twenty years ago.

I think the "big three" of the future will be Honda, Toyota, and Nissan. Nissan, by the way, is currently the bulk of our automotive business.
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Old 03-06-06, 06:29 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by Roody
I don't agree that Detroit became a slum because manufacturing left the city.

Detroit became a slum because the widespread use of the auto permitted people to move outside the city. Most wanted to move because they were racists who did not want to live near the rapidly expanding population of African-Americans. Then, much later, the jobs followed the whites to the suburbs. The suburbs of Detroit to this day are booming areas.

Detroit proper was killed by cars and racism!
That's correct, Roody. And Dayton is a scaled-down version of Detroit. I work in Moraine, a primarily industrial surburb of Dayton. They alone had five GM plants there, among other GM and a Chrysler plant in the area. Most of them are gone now.
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Old 03-06-06, 07:27 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by smurfy
That's correct, Roody. And Dayton is a scaled-down version of Detroit. I work in Moraine, a primarily industrial surburb of Dayton. They alone had five GM plants there, among other GM and a Chrysler plant in the area. Most of them are gone now.
In Lansing we've had Oldsmobile HQ leave, then of course shut down. Two huge GM plants closed recently and a couple small ones. They are building a state of the art plant very near Lansing, in a suburb. As I understand it (which isn't very well ), the new plant will make more cars with far fewer workers. Hundreds of parts transporter and subassembly jobs will also be lost because the new plant will be more efficient.

I really don't know what to think about all this. I'm one of those rare birds--a UAW member and an environmentalist! I worry about my city and my state, and of course all the people who currently build cars here. But I also wouldn't mind seeing a lot fewer polluting cars on the local roads, and also fewer polluting auto plants in Lansing and Michigan.

But one thing I'm pretty sure of: The OP was ridiculous to blame this loss of jobs on us!!!

(It would be so cool if big bicycle manufacturers came to Lansing to build bikes!)
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Old 03-06-06, 07:42 PM
  #37  
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The Death Of the Automobile? Not right away. All I have to do is step outside for a breath of (now imaginary) fresh air and see the masses of people blazing down the street in the biggest SUV they can get their hands on. And most of the people in these same vehicles road on little donkey carts just 5-10 years ago before they just wandered across our open border and took a job that an American might have worked at before. Go figure.
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Old 03-06-06, 09:15 PM
  #38  
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Hi Obliterator--Maybe you're too young to remember, or have forgotten, that this was predominately a single-provider household society until just one generation. Not long ago, women burnt their bras and took of the social chastity belts assigned to them by society for so long and went into the workforce by droves. Now, we're much closer to being a two wage earner household society. But we'll be going back closer to that original way within this coming generation. Families are already cutting back on the amount of time spent in the workplace, either because they feel they have enough money, don't want to spend the time apart, or just want to be at home raising their families.
One industry that is growing, and quite rapidly, is the environment "green" industry, which is on line to become bigger than what the automotive industry ever was. Hopefully, this green carrer trend can reverse the pollution and contaminants produced by the automotive sector (not just emissions, but waste from the manufacturing process itself) exponentially, so we can continue to thrive and debvate other topics, like this!
Cars will never go away, but hopefully they'll be bought and used more prudently.
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Old 03-06-06, 10:18 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by obliterator
Has anyone thought about how many jobs would be lost if people gave up purchasing new cars?
Yeah, and Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn.
It's time to start saying NO to jobs, and start saying YES to the environment.
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Old 03-06-06, 10:36 PM
  #40  
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Wow, obliterator -- I had no idea! Bikeforums is destroying... our very... way of life.

What have we done? What...have...we...DONE!?!

Bikes are such a small "threat" to the economy that it's laughable.

Watch closely over the next 10-15 years as the real threats to our economy start to take effect: climate change and diminishing oil supplies.
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Old 03-07-06, 09:31 AM
  #41  
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Originally Posted by Roody
I don't agree that Detroit became a slum because manufacturing left the city.

Detroit became a slum because the widespread use of the auto permitted people to move outside the city. Most wanted to move because they were racists who did not want to live near the rapidly expanding population of African-Americans. Then, much later, the jobs followed the whites to the suburbs. The suburbs of Detroit to this day are booming areas.

Detroit proper was killed by cars and racism!
Good one...

You might have point in that racism did play a huge part. I still believe if the manufacturing plants had stayed, you might still have a middle class white population in Detroit. I live in New Jersey and Newark had a massive manufacturing base at the turn of the century. Once these plants closed, the whites left for the burbs leaving behind a large poor black population behind. Today, Newark is poor slum but it was a combination of both that changed the city. The motorcar simply made it possible for the whites to leave for greener pastures.
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Old 03-07-06, 01:01 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve
Good one...

You might have point in that racism did play a huge part. I still believe if the manufacturing plants had stayed, you might still have a middle class white population in Detroit. I live in New Jersey and Newark had a massive manufacturing base at the turn of the century. Once these plants closed, the whites left for the burbs leaving behind a large poor black population behind. Today, Newark is poor slum but it was a combination of both that changed the city. The motorcar simply made it possible for the whites to leave for greener pastures.
GM headquarters are still in the central city. Detroit had and still has auto plants within the city limits, long after white flight is complete. Unfortunately, many jobs have left, and there is virtually no public transit for city residents to commute to suburban jobs. And there are no supermarkets within the city limits!

One of the greatest ironies of 20th century America is that the auto played a central role (along with racism) in the near death of Detroit.
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Old 03-07-06, 03:05 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by sunday driver
Maybe you're too young to remember, or have forgotten, that this was predominately a single-provider household society until just one generation.
You can't forget something that never was. Prior to the end of WWII the US had never been a single breadwinner society, and even during the "Leave it to Beaver" era single breadwinner nuclear families were not the majority of households.
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Old 03-07-06, 05:45 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by wsexson
You can't forget something that never was. Prior to the end of WWII the US had never been a single breadwinner society, and even during the "Leave it to Beaver" era single breadwinner nuclear families were not the majority of households.
It's actually true that prior to the early 60s, there were many more single-income households. The women's movement during the 60s and early 70s resulted in more women moving into the workplace. While I think we all agree that overall this was a good thing, one of the consequences was an increase in household income, which led to housing inflation (higher income=higher prices).

Again, while I do think overall the women's movement was a good thing, it is now impossible for most couples to get by on a single income. It's simply not affordable, though for many lower wage workers it was never affordable.
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Old 03-07-06, 08:54 PM
  #45  
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some of you people are a little uptight about people wanting cars. I personally would like to see all cars gone so my bikes rides would be a more enjoyable because I would not have to worry about getting run over.
I was just asking an innocent question that wasn't biased towards a particular side. What sparked this question though, was my serious worry about other people in the world and how the loss of so many jobs would effect them and their families.
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Old 03-07-06, 08:58 PM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by pmseattle
Just think of the even more terrible effect on the economy caused by people who have stopped smoking.
Our economy was not built on people smoking. There would be plenty of smaller towns that would cease to exist if it wasn't for the automobile.
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Old 03-07-06, 08:59 PM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve
Good one.

Everyone on this forum thinks the loss of automobiles will force other people to find high paying jobs in different fields. This is wishful thinking because Detroit became a slum once the manufacturing left the city and this has been repeated time in again in cities across the nation. I'm certain if Lansing lost its remaining manufacturing base, we will see slums where those autoworkers used to live.
fantastic point I was looking for a concrete example like this.
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Old 03-07-06, 09:04 PM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by sheba
Yeah, and Frankly my dear, I don't give a damn.
It's time to start saying NO to jobs, and start saying YES to the environment.
I hate this type of attitude. You would not be saying this if you were the one starving and in need of a job, what a selfish attitude you have. What good would a clean environment be if nobody was here to enjoy it because they all died of diseases and hungry. Wait what am I saying, you'd probably love it because you'd get this pristine environment all to your big hearted self.
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Old 03-07-06, 09:33 PM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by obliterator
I hate this type of attitude. You would not be saying this if you were the one starving and in need of a job, what a selfish attitude you have. What good would a clean environment be if nobody was here to enjoy it because they all died of diseases and hungry. Wait what am I saying, you'd probably love it because you'd get this pristine environment all to your big hearted self.
Hi, obliterator. I understand you are worried about the financial upheaval and social disruption that will potentially occur if and when automobiles go out of fashion or become impractical due to oil depletion. However, you should be equally or more concerned about the consequences that will and already are flowing from massive and growing automobile production/usage. You worry about starvation - well, we are paving farmland to make automobile dependent suburbia. Doesn't that worry you? You worry about disease - well, automobile culture has huge health implications...respiratory disease, obesity, motor vehicle trauma - people are dying in droves. That should concern you too. You think people care more about the environment than about other people. Well, all of us live in this environment - we don't have a spare one on Mars, so you should want to see it protected as much as the next person.
Perhaps you or someone in your family work in the automotive sector. That's fine - people need income. No-one wants to see you and your family left in the cold. But like it or not, there is a huge downside to automobile dependence, and it's not sustainable - it's going to have to end someday, either by planned phase out, or by catastrophic failure, and I for one like the first choice.
Regards
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Old 03-07-06, 09:43 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by obliterator
Your argument is based soley on faith that people who lose their jobs will find another one, am I correct? But the automotive industry is excessively massive employing hundreds of thousands of workers. The U.S. has been set up where goods and services are not readily accessible by bike and have been designed under the assumption that people can get their using a car. If the car manufacturers go out of buisness that would be due to a lack of interest in the autombile. And if this happens many buisnesses that rely on their customers getting to their establishment by car will lose out on many customers. In return their buisnesses will go under. So if the closure of automobile factories lead to the closure of buisnesses that rely on people having automobiles, where will all the people laid of from car plant work?
You are focusing on only one aspect of the situation: jobs. This is too limited a perspective. You could, for example, ask yourself; “if people stop buying cars, what else might they spend the money on and would that create other jobs”?

Even if you argued that they might not spend the money saved on something else and instead invest it. The same money is not going to sit idle in a vault somewhere – the bank is going to lend it out to other people. It’s called a multiplier effect.

And because these things do not happen overnight the likely outcome would be a wash.
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